An assessment of the national effort towards feral cat control

Garrard, G, Faulkner, R, Mata, L, Torabi, N, Peterson, I, Gordon, A and Bekessy, S 2017, An assessment of the national effort towards feral cat control, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

Document type: Commissioned Reports
Collection: Commissioned Reports

Title of report An assessment of the national effort towards feral cat control
Author(s) Garrard, G
Faulkner, R
Mata, L
Torabi, N
Peterson, I
Gordon, A
Bekessy, S
Year of publication 2017
Publisher RMIT University
Place of publication Melbourne, Australia
Subjects Conservation and Biodiversity
Environmental Management
Abstract/Summary This research project assesses progress towards achieving the target articulated in the Threatened Species Strategy of 2 million feral cats culled by 2020 (Australian Government 2015). For the first time, we have a plausible estimate of feral cat control in Australia by which to assess current and future effort. Using a combination of data sources including known data repositories, a strategic survey and estimates of baiting and council euthanasia programs, we estimate that the current approximate annual cull rate is 211,560 cats, with plausible bounds between 135,522 and 287,598. Our survey results indicate that the contribution of private individuals to feral cat control is extremely significant, and that the vast majority (in excess of 80%) of feral control may currently be unreported through official channels. Shooting (or trapping then shooting) is the main method of feral cat control. While we did not specifically collect information regarding the change in effort over time since the implementation of the Threatened Species Strategy (Australian Government 2015), qualitative data collected through our strategic survey indicates that culling by private individuals has not changed substantially over the years or in recent times. The methodology employed here could potentially be undertaken in future years to assess change in effort over time.
Commissioning body Australian Government Department of Environment and Energy
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